Basic Information for Codenames
Number of Players: 2-8+
Time: 15 minutes
Introduction to Codenames
Codenames is a team versus team game that is great to play with larger groups of people. It’s a fairly simple concept where the team leader of each team is trying to get their team members to guess the correct code words. Codenames is a great communication game which also engages your puzzle solving and interpretation abilities as you and your team try to guess all the correct codenames before the other team. I highly recommend this game for adults and especially at big family gatherings.
How to Play Codenames
Codenames is set up fairly quickly with a 5×5 grid of words on the table with the team leaders and team members sitting opposite each other. The team leaders have a card with a 5×5 grid that shows the position of words that they need their team to guess. The color around the edge of the card determines who goes first and that team leader then gives their team the first clue. A clue is comprised of two things, a number which is the amount of code words the team member wants their team to guess, and a single word that connects those cards together. There are some restrictions to what this clue word can be as read in the manual. If the team guesses correctly, the team leader places a tile of the team color on the correctly guessed word and the team continues until they have found the remaining words from the same clue. If they find them all they are allowed to guess an additional code word, usually from a previous clue to which they were not able to see at the time. If they get a bystander or their other teams code word, the turn ends and it moved to the next team. If they find the assassin, they lose the round and the other team wins.
Notes on Codenames
Codenames is a great party game that I play all the time with my family. My mum has trouble reading so we generally play the pictures version which has some amazing illustrations. I also own the original version and the duet version which I play all the time with my partner. There are also other versions such as Disney, Marvel and Harry potter, all which would be a great gift for someone who loves their respective franchises. Codenames is such a solid game and I highly recommend it for anyone who commonly is playing with larger groups of more than 6 people.